12 Places to Donate Old Eyeglasses in the US (2023)

Published Nov 15, 2021

You may take your eyeglasses for granted, but many visually-impaired people are forced to live without them.

According to the World Health Organization, there are over 2 billion people around the world who need eyeglasses but don’t have access to them. That’s about a quarter of the world’s population. At this scale, it’s one of the biggest health crises you’ve never heard of.

For some people, a pair of eyeglasses is more than just a tool to see better. It can also be their lifeline. A woman who does crafts may lose her livelihood if she can’t see clearly. While a visually-impaired student who can’t afford to buy glasses may end up quitting school altogether.

So if you have a pair of old but still functional eyeglasses lying around in your closet, don’t throw them away. Donate them instead. You’ll never know whose life you’ll change with those.

Aside from helping people, you’ll also be doing mother earth a favor. They won’t end up in landfills and those plastic rims won’t add up to the pollution in our environment.

You can donate eyeglasses to help the poor and homeless through our christian charity online. Visit our homepage to find our online donation form.

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Where to Donate Old Eyeglasses

If you’re planning to donate old eyeglasses, here are the places you can check out:

1. Lions Club International (LCI)

LCI is a worldwide community of volunteers engaged in various charitable activities. They also have eyeglass recycling centers in various locations around the world. Seven of them are in the US. Their volunteers collect old but still usable donated glasses and ship them to the nearest eyeglass recycling centers. There they are cleaned and carefully packaged before being sent to eyeglass-dispensing missions.

They accept both sunglasses and reading glasses. Just drop your donation at any Lions or Leos Club collection point near you.

Learn more about how you can donate to them here.

2. Respectacle

Harnessing the power of the internet, this charity connects people needing eyeglasses to those with some to spare. All donations, including prescription glasses, are uploaded to their website. Anyone needing them simply has to log in to their site and browse which prescription glasses match their needs.

You can ship your donations or drop them off at their drop-off locations all around the US.

Learn more about how you can donate to them here.

3. OneSight

For more than 30 years, OneSight has stayed true to its commitment to eliminating the global vision care crisis. It has helped people from 46 countries and has established permanent vision centers around the world.

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Though they accept old eyeglasses, they only distribute new glasses in their missions. All donated eyewear is channeled to various Lions organizations to aid in their projects. You can drop your eyewear donations for them at Sears Optical and Pearle Vision drop-off centers.

Learn more about how you can donate to them here.

4. Eyes of Hope

Launched by VSP Global, the Eyes of Hope Project aims to deliver eye care to those who need it the most. Aside from mobile clinics, they are also collecting and distributing used eyeglasses around the world. The VSP Eyes of Hope Program accepts used contact lenses too as long as they’re still intact. Some of their beneficiaries include poor communities and victims of natural and manmade disasters.

Learn more about how you can donate to them here.

5. The Lighthouse

Based in Georgia, this charitable institution distributes recycled eyewear around the globe. They accept all types of eyeglasses in any condition. You can send them used phones and hearing aids too. If you live too far from Georgia and don’t want to ship your donations, they have also partnered with Lions Club International. You can drop off your donations at any Lions collection center around the world.

Learn more about how you can donate to them here.

6. Goodwill

We all know what Goodwill does. You’ve probably dropped off used clothes at least once in their stores. But did you know you can donate used eyeglasses too? Yes, Goodwill accepts eyewear donations and matches them with low-income members of the community who needs them. They also partner with other charitable organizations to distribute the donated eyeglasses.

Learn more about how you can donate to them here.

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7. Walmart

Most Walmart Vision Centers accept donations of used glasses including prescription, reading, and even sunglasses. You’ll usually find those blue drop-off boxes near the store’s entrance and exit. Just make sure to wrap your eyeglass donation properly so they won’t get damaged inside the box.

Learn more about how you can donate to them here.

8. Lens Crafters

Primarily known as an eyewear retailer, Lens Crafters also accepts donations of gently-used prescription and non-prescription eyeglasses. In partnership with OneSight, they distribute the donated glasses to visually-impaired people around the world.

Aside from distributing eyeglasses, they also have vision clinics where volunteer doctors offer free eye exams and consultations to underprivileged patients. Patients can also get their own made-to-order glasses right on site.

Learn more about how you can donate to them here.

9. David Kind

Like Lens Crafters, David Kind also sells both prescription and non-prescription eyeglasses. But the company also has a program that lets their customers trade in their old eyeglasses for a $50 discount off their next purchase. The donated eyeglasses are then sorted by prescription and given to someone in need.

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Their website’s fine print, however, says that the offer is only limited to one per customer. Plus, the brand of your eyeglass donation must also retail for $89 and up.

Learn more about how you can donate to them here.

10. Salvation Army

Aside from used clothes, Salvation Army also accepts various in-kind donations including old eyeglasses. But they must be clean and undamaged. They sell everything they receive at their thrift stores and use the proceeds to fund their various charity programs.

Salvation Army has drop-off centers all across the US. If there is no drop-off location near you, you can also schedule a pick-up on their site and they’ll come and get your donation right from your doorstep.

Learn more about how you can donate to them here.

11. America’s Best

Another eyewear retailer, America’s Best partners with Lions Club International to distribute gently used eyeglasses to people around the world who need them. You can drop your old eyeglasses in donation boxes located in their stores all across the US.

Besides old eyeglasses, the company also partners with nonprofits to collect new and unused eyeglass frames and distribute them to charitable organizations all around the world.

Learn more about how you can donate to them here.

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12. Local Charity

If you don’t want to drive far or ship your donation, you can always give them to a local charity. That way, the eyeglasses won’t have to travel far and will benefit people from your community. Some optometrists also do eyewear donation drives for their patients who cannot afford prescription eyeglasses. You can visit one and inquire as to how you can make a donation.

Tips When Donating Old Eyeglasses

With many organizations accepting eyeglass donations all across the US, donating eyeglasses can be as easy as grabbing them and dropping them off in donation boxes. But before you do that, here are some tips to make your donation count:

  1. Don’t donate broken eyeglasses. This one is pretty obvious. If you’re donating eyeglasses, make sure they can still be used by the person receiving them. Otherwise, it will only add to the workload of the volunteers in the organization you’re donating them to.
  2. Pack your donation securely. Remember that eyeglasses are easily breakable. So it’s important to pack them securely so they will reach your intended recipient intact.

3. Eyeglass donations can be tax-deductible if you’re donating to an accredited organization. The amount of tax deduction will be based on the fair market value of the eyeglass you’re donating. Since they’re used, you can’t expect a tax deduction on the original price of the eyeglass.


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